Lamb of God Renewal of spring, hope for future

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LAMB OF GOD conductor Derek Larson shares in the sheer joy radiating through both audience and performers at St. Ignatius Mission Friday, April 6. (Carolyn Hidy/Lake County Leader)

The annual Lamb of God performances at St. Ignatius Mission are as fulfilling a community gift as one could ever ask for.

The Easter season brings a time for Christians to reaffirm their faith, while non-Christians often feel the renewal of spring and a new hope for the future. Lamb of God is an inspiration for all, filling the awe-inspiring cathedral with soaring choir, orchestra and narration — giving a poignant telling of the story of Christ.

Each year, volunteer musicians, sound engineers and directors gather from across the region for months of rehearsal, contributing their considerable talents to the seasonal creation that gathers people to St. Ignatius. Conducted by Derek Larson of St. Regis, an orchestra of 24, including solo cello for the voice of Jesus played by Kristen Williams, and a 51-voice choir, made the rafters ring with emotion and grace for three magnificent performances.

Donations collected from these performances are contributing to the restoration of the historic St. Ignatius Mission. Last year’s work included fixing a cracked beam, and when artisans began work on restoring the famous frescoes by mission cook, Brother Joseph Carignan, they found that the plaster was peeling away from the lath and needed to be fixed first. They were able to complete restoration of several paintings, and work will continue this year when the weather warms.

The three-concert series in St. Ignatius finished Sunday night, April 7 but it will be worth every effort to see one of the three upcoming performances as Lamb of God goes on the road. They will perform at 7 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, April 16 and 17 at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Missoula, and at the Ronan Performing Arts Center on Easter Eve, Saturday, April 20.

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